As I look up at my calendar and see that we’re already in February, I’ve come to a surprising realization: Above the Canopy is almost two years old!
Unlike most birthday parties for 2 year olds, I thought it’d be a good idea to nix the pizza, birthday cake, and screaming children in favor of a new tradition: an annual “state of the blog” post. Above the Canopy has come quite a long way in its short life, and I’d like to take this opportunity to touch base with you, the readership, on the state of the blog.
The State of the Blog
The state of the blog is strong! Overall I feel pretty good about Above the Canopy. Especially considering the challenges of balancing new content with the needs of a small business. As you may know, I spend most of my waking hours building & managing my financial planning business, Three Oaks Capital Management. And as it turns out, growing a small business is a massive job. Between that and family life I’m not quite able to give Above the Canopy the attention that I’d really like to.
Nevertheless, there’s a lot that I’d like to do with Above the Canopy. And despite the demands on my time, readership is is growing at a strong clip. Over 7,000 visitors found the site last month, which is over a 100% increase from January of 2017.
On the year, we had 47,446 visitors to the site vs. 12,925 in 2016. (Keep in mind that the blog launched in April of 2016 though, so it was a short year). As far as posting went, I managed to publish 30 times in 2017 vs. 38 in 2016. Not as frequently as I’d like but hey, I’m learning as I go here.
There are several things I’d like to improve on the site in 2018 and beyond. I’ll cover them below by listing each individual objective. My hope is that communicating them will give you some insight into where the blog is headed (and give me a little more pressure to get them done!). And as always, I’d love some feedback on what you enjoy about the blog, what you don’t, and what you’d like to see in the future. Feel free to share in the comments.
Objective #1: Publish New Post Every Week
First and foremost, I’d like to post more consistently. (Yes, I’ve said this before). There’s several periods since I started the blog that weeks, if not months, have passed in between posts. I’d like to cut down on these gaps in content as much as possible. My current plan is to write & queue up a backlog of upcoming posts. Hopefully this will give me a bit of a buffer during the weeks that my day job demands the bulk of my time.
Objective #2: Improve Site Design
I’d also like to improve the site’s visual appeal. I’m not the most graphically minded person, and there are many places around the site that I wished look better. So thanks for putting up with my crude design skills thus far! My hope is that a better looking site will be more user friendly, engaging, and help build readership faster.
Objective #3: More Focused Content
Looking back at some of the posts over the last two years, there are several that really make me cringe. Going forward I’d like to focus mostly on producing content that will help small business owners improve their personal finances. I guess its obvious that your writing & content production skills tend to improve the more you use them. I have a long way to go before I’d consider myself a strong writer. Which is exactly why I want to narrow the blog’s scope in the next 12 months.
Objective#4 : More Social Media
Here’s another one I’ve said in the past. I really want to improve (and feel like I need to improve) my social media game. Getting more active on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, et al. should help expand the reach of the blog….if done correctly. I’d like to share content that’s important/interesting to the readership, and position the site to be more engaging. Whether its on abovethecanopy.us, Facebook, or elsewhere.
Objective #5: More Video
Along with the social media theme comes more video. Video is so easily digestible, and another channel I think will help grow the blog. Like my design skills, my video production skills are crude at best. Thankfully, I’ll probably be in the market for a video editor for the business in the next 18 months. With any luck I’ll be able to get some assistance on blog content as well.
The State of the Blog is Strong!
So what do you think? What would you like to see more of on the blog? What needs changing, and where am I way off the mark?